About a year after taking the helm at the Castle Rock Police Department, Chief Jack Cauley made good on his promise to add to the force.
The department on Jan. 7 hosted a swearing-in and promotional ceremony to welcome seven new officers and celebrate the promotion of two officers to the rank of sergeant.
Officers Eric McCarty and Todd Brown were promoted to sergeant. McCarty, who was formerly promoted to corporal, has served for more than 10 years in Castle Rock. Brown has been a police officer since 1997 with the town.
The seven new hires joined Castle Rock's police department from among 175 applicants during a four-month selection process, according to the town.
The new hires bump Castle Rock's police force to 60 officers.
Among the new officers, five will be patrol officers, including one who will fill a vacant position; one will be a community policing officer; and the last will be an investigator, Cauley said. One of the new officers is filling a vacant position in the police department, according to the town of Castle Rock.
“We are very excited and confident the new positions will help advance our department for years to come,” Cauley said.
The new officers are Laura Casares, Jennifer Dignam, Dustin Frost, Allen Hanners, Nicholas Stamos, Renee Tremaine and Steven Whiteman.
Casares worked for four years at the Arvada Police Department; she has bachelor's and master's degrees and is presently pursuing a doctorate in criminal justice.
Dignam worked more than four years as an officer for Cherry Hills Village; she attended the Arapahoe Community College Police Academy and has an associate degree in criminal justice.
Frost, who is a native of Castle Rock, served five years of active duty in the Marine Corps, including three deployments with Operation Iraqi Freedom; he has a bachelor's degree in sociology/criminology and is a graduate of the police academy at Otero Junior College
Hanners served as a financial crimes detective with the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department; he was born and raised in Littleton and graduated from Arapahoe Community College before his 1995 move to Las Vegas.
Stamos graduated in 2011 from the Pikes Peak Regional Law Enforcement Academy and has a bachelor's degree in sociology from the University of Colorado-Colorado Springs.
Tremaine graduated in December from the Basic Law Enforcement Training Academy at the Community College of Aurora; she earned a criminal justice degree from the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire and completed an internship with the Madison Police Department in Wisconsin.
Whiteman enlisted in the Army in 2007 and was deployed to Afghanistan in 2009, where he received a Purple Heart; he graduated in December from the Red Rocks Community College Law Enforcement Training Academy.
The combined salaries and benefits packages for the new employees total $530,000, plus a one-time equipment expense of $193,000, said town spokeswoman Caroline Kipp. The equipment expenditure includes the purchase of three new patrol vehicles and one new investigator vehicle costing a total of $172,750, Kipp said.
The expenses were included in the 2013 budget and the town's three-year financial plan. Among the priorities outlined in the plan was increasing safety personnel.
“The people of Castle Rock are invested in their community,” Cauley said. “They care about their neighbors and their businesses. We have a great team here. I'm very proud to be a part of it.”